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Spelthorne Shortlisted in UK Housing Awards

22nd September 2022

Spelthorne Borough Council has been shortlisted as a finalist in this year’s UK Housing Awards for its innovative approach to tackling homelessness in the Borough.

From over 340 entries, Spelthorne is one of ten organisations shortlisted in the ‘Homelessness project of the year – south’ category.

The Council’s award entry highlighted the various achievements and initiatives implemented this year by the Council to tackle homelessness.

Two facilities – Harper House and the White House – were built in Ashford by the Council to provide temporary accommodation. The White House provides specialist accommodation for single homeless people with complex needs and Harper House offers emergency accommodation for families awaiting a move to settled housing.

Spelthorne has played a key role as the leading authority for the step-down project which supports hospital discharges across North-West Surrey. This is designed to provide temporary accommodation for older patients who are ready to leave hospital but whose homes are no longer suitable or need adaptations before they can return. This plays a significant part in reducing the pressure on the NHS.

Last year saw the conversion of part of the Council’s own offices to provide 25 flats for residents on the housing register, an initiative which has been short listed for a government property project award. A Council development in Sunbury also provided 55 affordable rented homes which included 11 homes for key workers, and approval for another Spelthorne development at Victory Close in Ashford will provide 127 further affordable homes for key workers.

A Refugee Scheme policy was established in February 2022 which has seen the Council assess and examine the details of refugee schemes brought forward by the home office. The Council also opted to support five families under the Afghan Relocation Assistance Programme and has been working to support guests arriving under the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

Many other initiatives including providing funding for Citizens Advice and Look Ahead, helping residents with housing deposits, setting up a multi-agency homelessness forum and raising awareness of homelessness among young people were also implemented.

Cllr Maureen Attewell, Chair of the Community Wellbeing and Housing Committee, said: “We are extremely proud of our achievements this year and to be shortlisted for this prestigious award.

“Taking care of people when they are at their most vulnerable is one of the most important roles we have as a Council and will always be a priority. I would like to thank the team for their hard work and dedication.“

Representatives from Spelthorne Borough Council will be attending the Awards evening being held on Friday 25 November.

Click here to see the finalists for all the categories